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Commercial Agriculture

corn tar spot

Corn tar spot disease monitoring in Illinois

Tar spot on corn is here to stay in Illinois. Given that the pathogen that causes tar spot on corn can overwinter in infected residue, once the pathogen is in a field, it is more likely to be problematic in that field in the future. If you’ve been a victim of high incidence and/or severity of corn...
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photo of a sweat bee covered in pollen

Pollinators in soybean production- Are you in the know?

Did you know that more than one-third of the food humans consume depend on pollinators for reproduction, i.e., fruit set? And when talking about flowering plants, three-quarters require pollinator intervention for reproduction.  Granted, I know my audience here is primarily corn and soybean...
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title of article in a graphic form

Soybean Disease Management: Back to Basics

It’s never too early to think about plant diseases! There are few sure things in this great wide world of ours. The sun rises in the east and sets in the west, gravity holds us down to the earth, and living things are susceptible to pests and pathogens.  When you put your beans out...
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hands holding a telescope looking to the future

Crop disease forecast for 2021

Much of the 2020 crop has just been harvested, but it's never too early to discuss crop diseases in the forecast for 2021.  Did you come here thinking you might actually get some idea of what diseases will prove problematic next year? Good. Am I going to give you specific diseases for which...
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mobile phone screen with an image of a corn and soybean field and a person in the field saying "hello"

Virtual Field Days Coming to a Screen Near You

The year 2020 has been out-of-the-ordinary, to say the least. Illinois Extension is utilizing web-based program delivery methods on a larger scale than ever, which leads us to one of the very few silver linings of our current circumstances: increased access to programs across the state.  One...
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corn seedlings

It's time to think about corn nematodes

The spring 2020 planting season season is moving right along, and as such, fields all over the state have great corn seedlings up and thriving. With the emergence of the new crop comes all of the concerns and worries that farmers must contend with throughout the growing season. Among those...
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Commercial Ag Webinar Series

Illinois Extension's Commercial Agriculture team has been working to put together a new webinar series targeted towards those in production agriculture in the state of Illinois. With the uncertainty around the likelihood of face-to-face programming for the summer of 2020, the team wanted to work to...
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hands holding an electronic tablet in a wheat field

Learn how to use your farm data effectively and efficiently

Agriculture is a numbers game now more than any other time in history. Precision agriculture and the integration of technology and location services has given farmers heaps and heaps of data. Don't get me wrong, data are great. But what are you doing with all of those data? Are you able to...
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Beautiful yellow ears of corn on stalks, Hill & Furrow Blog, Presented by Chelsea Harbach.

Allow me to introduce myself...

Hello! My name is Chelsea Harbach and I am the new commercial agriculture Extension educator located at the Northwestern Illinois Research and Demonstration Center outside of Monmouth, Illinois.  I come to you from "out west" in Ames, Iowa where I lived for four years while working on my Ph.D...
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